Monday, April 27, 2009

Garden II (Planning and Planting)

Managed to get the first of my three gardens planted over the incredible weekend. Used a modified version of the French Intensive Method that has you placing plants in very close proximity to help in eliminating excessive weeding and maximize available space.

I have to admin as I started preparing the soil to place the first seeds I felt very apprehensive, like I was going to do something wrong or somehow screw-up the planting. Not having gardened since I was a small kid had left me thinking that this stuff was a lot harder than it really is. As usual I was OVER THINKING the situation. Within about 1/2 an hour I had settled into a planting routine and was able to relax and begin to see how much fun planting and caring for a garden can be.

While I was planting my little ones watched intently and I was even able to coerce the eldest away from playing with his dinosaurs for long enough to help me plant the red onion bulbs! It is great to see him developing an interest! *One thing I learned is that most of the early season plantings (lettuce, spinach, broccoli, carrots, etc.) are extremely difficult for small uncoordinated hands to manage effectively. Onion bulbs, peas and later season plantings such as beans will be much easier.

Here is what the book recommended for spacing:

Broccoli - 12” sq – 1 Plant
Broccoli Rabe & Carrots – 3” in 12” sq – 16 Plants
Spinach – 4” in 12” sq – 9 Plants
Lettuce – 6” in 12” sq – 4 Plants
Peas – 4” in 12” sq – Separated by chicken wire

Basic planting guidelines around Garden #1 (April)
Row 1 - 4/25 Peas from seeds (supported w/chicken wire)
Row 2 -4/25 Peas from seeds (supported w/chicken wire)
Row 3 -4/25 Broccoli from seeds
Row 4 -4/25 Broccoli from seeds
Row 5 -4/25 Red Onions from started bulbs
Row 6 -4/25 Broccoli Rabe (one entire packet used)
Row 7 -4/25 Carrots from seeds
Row 8 -4/25 Spinach from seeds
Row 9 -4/25 Lettuce from seeds

Side Garden
Row 1 - 4/25 - Garlic (13 bulbs) and 20 Red Onions

Thursday, April 16, 2009


I had the chance today to play on a website that allows you to take digital print and quickly and easily convert it to a Word Map. Really a fun tool for writers to play around with to see if the article properly covers the topics that the author wishes to stress. Above is a "wordle" on a story that I recently submitted for publication on "Hunting With the Single Shot Rifle".

You can also do one for your BLOG site!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Garden . . .

Aching muscles and joints today after managing to dig several sizable holes in my lawn this past weekend. I was seriously shown up by my 74 year old Portuguese father in law who showed me that men aren't built like they used to be. After six hours of using a heavy hoe to remove the sob and loosen the soil he was still going strong while I was ready to take a nap.

I decided to incorporate a few considerations when I designed the garden using something I read about called the "French Technique". The basic idea is to create access paths and really focus on planting crops in rotation and close together to discourage weed growth. Well, will have ot see how it works.

As I watched the sun streak across the sky yesterday afternoon I was somewhat disappointed that my plots did not appear to be getting as much sun as I had originally envisioned. Well, this year is my grand experiment with my green thumb so I guess I will have to just wait and see.

Next on the list is adding some loam and compost next weekend and getting seedling trays and seeds ordered!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Wabbit Huntin'

I feel as of late, I have dropped off the blogging face of the world. Have been frantic on a couple of projects around the house and work that have monopolized most of my time. Well, I guess I can't complain I am one of those personalities that loves to be busy! The following is a story I have been trying to complete for well over a week now but just can't seem to get it going much beyond the beginning stages . . .

As the phone rang on Friday evening I was rather hopeful that it would be a call from my next-door neighbor asking if I wanted to pursue bunnies for the final time before the season closed. Never one to disappoint, I heard his gruff old voice on the other end of the line . . . “Hey you wanna hunt Wabbits tomorrow morning?”. Of course my immediate reply was a barely contained affirmative.

Arriving around 7:30 the next morning I was pleased that the nightly blanket of cloud cover had managed to keep the morning temperatures at a descent level that would allow me to hunt with a light form fitting jacket. Earlier in the season I had missed a rabbit when the butt end of my stock caught on my bulky winter jacket. The low lying clouds also blocked a majority of the rising morning sun keeping down the glare off the snow.

As we crept through the thick brush with slow deliberate movements it didn’t take long for the bunnies to panic and to start running. Hunting rabbits without a dog isn’t the most perfect scenario but it can be a ton of fun. Within an hour and a half we managed to take two nice rabbits and enjoy the last day of the 08-09 rabbit season.

Enjoy the picture of two very happy hunters!

For more on hunting rabbits see:
Hunting the Snowshoe Hare
Rabbit Hunting Without Dogs

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Seed On the Wind by Bill Geagan

Picture at left was provided by a reader. Special thanks! 

"Autograph in Nature I Loved from Bill Geagan to Russ Johnson, father of Jerry Johnson ,

Last of Bill Geagan "Seed On the Wind" Highlights.

Fishing makes great men greater and the average man better in many ways. – P. 183

People have a respect for privacy on two occasions. One of them is prayer and the other is fishing, and a man can’t pray all of the time. – P. 184

It is better to go often to seek the lowly sunfish and perch of the nearby lily pond than to make only widely spaced jaunts to the wind lashed lakes and tumbling streams of the salmon and trout. – P. 186

Lift your children from comparative helplessness to your own level by such simple yet effective methods as asking their opinions of fishing tackle and lures, the most productive fishing spots and hours, best woods for the fire, and on and on. All boys and girls want ot be important. They want to be grown-ups. They will be one day, and the good ones with this sort of early training. – P. 187

A man is little more than a boy held in the prison of time and trouble. And always the desire to escape to the enchanted valley of youth burns brightly in his heart. He who lives best and longest manages such breaks, such flights into the wonderful freedom of the past, from time to time. And he who is accompanied by his children doubly rewarded for his efforts. – P. 191

Suddenly the day is very old. Color has drained from the world and the stars come out. Night spreads its black blanket bejeweled with dew. Perfume rides the wind wisps and suddenly the lake and the stream are but soft sounds. – P. 191
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